This document describes the research strategy for a series of mesoscale studies of Arctic marginal ice zones. The main goal of this program is to gain a better understanding of the processes occurring at the ice margin. These processes are relevant to climate, weather forecasting, petroleum exploration and production, marine transportation, naval operations, and commercial fisheries. In addition, MIZEX will aid in determining what modifications to existing ice-ocean-atmospheric models are needed for better prediction near the ice margin. These goals are consistent with recommendations made by international scientific bodies, most notably those of the Joint Scientific Committee (JSC) in its plan for the World Climate Research Programme (WMO-ICSU, 1981). In this document the JSC states that for improved modeling it is necessary: 'To study the physical processes affecting interactions between air, ice and sea at the sea-ice margin and to develop methods for their adequate representation in climate models.' More specific details on initial field programs will be addressed in planning meetings in the near future. In addition, it is anticipated that other aspects of the program, such as modeling, will be addressed in future workshops, with the results distributed in a similar format to this research strategy.